Pregnancy is a time of great joy as a whole new life is about to unfold within you. However, for every 1 in 4 women, the journey ends in pregnancy loss. Even more disturbing is the guilt feeling that you may have in some way caused it. This needless guilt is often the result of misinformation and stigma surrounding the talks concerning pregnancy loss. It is, therefore, imperative to have a basic understanding of what pregnancy loss is and its underlying causes.
The UCLA Health Centre defines pregnancy loss as a clinically-recognised pregnancy (pregnancy that has been visualized on an ultrasound) that involuntarily ends before 20 weeks.
Different forms of Pregnancy Loss
Clinically 5 different forms have been identified.
- Embryonic Pregnancy: When the egg is fertilized but fails to develop into an embryo.
- Miscarriage: When it occurs before 13 weeks of It is also known as spontaneous abortion.
- Ectopic Pregnancy: When foetus develops outside the uterus, either in the fallopian tube, cervix, pelvis or abdomen.
- Molar Pregnancy: When placenta and foetal tissue develop abnormally.
- Stillbirth: When the foetus dies after 20 weeks of pregnancy.
Causes of Pregnancy Loss
There can be different causes for pregnancy loss.
- Genetic or chromosomal abnormalities in the Underlying health conditions (like hormonal imbalances, PCOS, diabetes, blood pressure) and lifestyle habits (drug, alcohol abuse, poor diet) of the pregnant women.
- Injury or trauma
- Exposure to toxic
The most common symptom of pregnancy loss is vaginal bleeding. However, there are other symptoms like severe abdominal cramps and backache, discharge of whitish-pink mucus, belly pain, etc.
Diagnosis and Treatment
Physical examination along with blood hCG test and ultrasound help diagnose it. Once it has been confirmed, foetal tissues need to be removed from the uterus to avoid further complications. On the basis of the week and type of pregnancy loss, any one of the following method is practised.
- The remaining foetal tissues are allowed to pass naturally through the body.
- Medicines (such as misoprostol) may be inserted vaginally or given orally to remove the tissues.
- Surgical removal of the remaining tissues.
The loss of a pregnancy, no matter how early or late, lead to feelings of intense grief and despair. Remember, it is not your fault. It is important, at this time, to reach out to family and friends and seek their help. Also, it is the social responsibility of the closed ones to extend their full emotional support to help the woman in pain to come out of her grief and sorrow.
** This post is a collaboration and It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice or treatment. Always seek the advice of your doctor or another qualified healthcare provider with any questions. This post is written by Megha from Bio drivers as a guest post.